Sep 06 2011

Print this Post

Clear vs. Dark: Liquor Type Can Affect Hangover Severity

Posted By: Harvard DAPA

There are numerous factors contributing to the alcohol “hangover,” a state characterized by numerous physical and mental symptoms including fatigue, headache, nausea, irritability, and increased sensitivity to light. One significant hangover-inducing factor that you may not have thought about is the presence of congeners in your drink.

Alcohol congeners refer to biologically active compounds produced alongside ethanol during fermentation of alcoholic beverages. These congeners contribute to the distinct taste, smell, and appearance of individual liquors, but certain congeners, like methanol, have been implicated in increased severity of hangover symptoms.

Congeners are found in highest concentrations in dark liquors such as brandy, tequila, whiskey, and red wine. In contrast clear liquors, such as vodka, rum, and gin, have fewer congeners. In one interesting study, it was reported that 33% of subjects who were given controlled amounts of bourbon (dark liquor, high congener content), but only 3% of subjects given the same dose of vodka (clear liquor, lower congener content), showed symptoms of severe hangover (Chapman, 1970).
So the next time you pick up a drink, you might want to consider the color.

JG Wiese, MG Shlipak, WS Browner. The Alcohol Hangover. Annals of Internal Medicine, 2000.
R Swift and D Davidson. Alcohol Hangover. Alcohol Health and Research World, 1998.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.harvarddapa.org/2011/09/clear-vs-dark/


Skip to comment form

  1. Sarah

    Very nice, i suggest webmaster can set up a forum, so that we can talk and communicate.

    1. Bella

      That saves me. Thanks for being so sensible!

  2. LasloDemsi

    Bravo, what necessary words…, an excellent idea

  3. joncooperst

    I was looking for this wonderful forum, and found it. Now I’m your regular user. rnThanks for the administration of this forum.

  4. Nancy

    Thanks for the share!

    1. Jeannie

      Super informative writing; keep it up.

  5. Doudoune moncler

    You seem to be really specialist in the way you write

  6. Hellen Green

    Thanks for the share!

  7. Mekutethy

    Man .. Excellent .. Amazing .. I’ll bookmark your site and take the feeds additionallyI’m satisfied to search out so many helpful info right here in the put up, we need work out more strategies in this regard, thank you for sharing. . . . . .

  8. baltimore cruises

    Superb website you have here but I was curious if you knew of any message boards that cover the same topics talked about in this article? I’d really love to be a part of online community where I can get suggestions from other experienced individuals that share the same interest. If you have any suggestions, please let me know. Appreciate it!

Leave a Reply